Brandon Wilson showed he could adjust on the fly with very little problem. The Houston junior showed his old high school form in quickly switching positions for his team's biggest football game of the season.
With the West Division of the American Athletic Conference on the line, Wilson had to shift gears in midweek, moving from cornerback to running back because of a key injury for the Cougars.
Playing the position for the first time since high school, Wilson rushed for 111 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries Saturday in a 52-31 win over visiting Navy to clinch the division title.
Houston (11-1) will host Temple (10-2) in the inaugural AAC championship Saturday at noon.
"I was pretty sore," Wilson said in a telephone interview. Not that he was complaining.
"It was a great experience," he said. "I wasn't really surprised [by the position switch]. I was kind of nervous and once I got my rhythm I felt I was good."
"He's a smart kid and a tough runner," Houston coach Tom Herman said earlier this week.
Wilson hadn't carried the ball since he rushed for 1,800 yards as a high school senior in Louisiana. He has shown a propensity for running the ball, returning an interception 51 yards for a touchdown this season and also having two kickoff returns for scores.
"He has done kickoff returns all year and is used to having the ball in his hands," Herman said, "and obviously playing tailback is different, but he stepped up when his number was called."
The question is: Will it be called this week? Starting tailback Kenneth Farrow is day-to-day with a high ankle sprain. Herman said that Wilson would practice on offense and defense this week and could play on both sides of the ball against Temple.
The 5-foot-11, 200-pound Wilson could not make up his mind regarding where he enjoys playing the most.
"I like all three of them," he said of playing offense, defense and returning kicks. "It's all a lot of fun."